The Fosters Season-Premiere Recap: Fight the Power

Maia Mitchell as Callie. Photo: Nicole Wilder/Freeform
The Fosters

The Fosters

Resist Season 5 Episode 1
Editor's Rating 3 stars

And … exhale. After a season finale that left all of our Adams Fosters in peril, whether physical (ugh, why, Callie?) or emotional (honestly, everyone), The Fosters has returned. It wastes no time in pushing all of the story lines it left hanging in season four forward in mostly interesting ways. So, yes, feel free to breath again. Everyone is safe and Callie’s brief sojourn into a pimp’s den is over. Everybody wins! But mostly us, because that Callie story line was not easy to get behind.

If you recall, Callie, believing she was going to lose her hit-and-run trial and be tossed into prison, takes the place of a girl who Diamond, the teen prostitute Stef has been trying to save, wanted to bring to Russell the Pimp. Callie does this instead of, you know, calling her cop mom or something else reasonable. She knows Stef can track her via a phone app, but unfortunately, Callie’s phone gets handed off in a drug trade. It sends Stef very much not in the direction of where Callie is, and leaves Callie vulnerable with Russell the Pimp. He is just as awful as you would imagine, which is to say, very.

With Russell ratcheting up the creep factor, Callie and Diamond work together to figure out a way to get out of this whole mess. While another young girl does Callie’s makeup, Diamond steals her phone and snags a photo of herself with the motel address to send to Stef. However, it takes a while for Stef to get this photo since she’s off following the wrong drug dealer. There are a lot of harrowing moments in this episode, but none worse than watching Stef gather up the strength to whisper Callie’s name into the trunks of cars in the parking lot where the phone app led her, after realizing her daughter could be trapped in one of them. We’re only one episode in and Teri Polo is already making me tear up. Should be a fun season!

When Stef finally see Diamond’s text, the timing could not be better. Back at the motel, things continue to escalate until Diamond grabs Russell’s gun and turns it on him. There’s lots of shouting things like “He’s not worth it!” and “I want this be over!” It’s kind of scary … except for the fact that we know Callie is making it out of this alive. Diamond, thankfully, doesn’t have to make any kind of choice here because one of Russell’s drug associates comes knocking and the two of them get into it. Callie and Diamond avoid the scuffle — in which Russell gets shot — and run out of the motel pretty much directly into the arms of Stef and the San Diego police force.

Russell is hauled off (may we never speak of him again), Diamond is put into a home (please make good choices), and we’re left with Callie and Stef alone for another Callie and Stef Talk in the Car and Make-Us-Cry Moment. This car chat may top all car chats, though. It features Stef speaking so much truth, I applauded at the end. She informs her daughter that Troy Johnson has confessed to his grandmother’s murder, which in turn means Callie’s hit-and-run case will be tossed out. So that whole “nothing left to lose” attitude that led Callie into the Russell situation was completely wrong, and Callie almost didn’t live to realize it. Stef asks what it will take for Callie to start valuing her life. She doesn’t know what to do for her anymore. Oh, Stef, you beautiful mermaid woman. You deserve all the awards for finally speaking the harsh truth to Callie. Please, oh, pretty please, let this be where she turns it around. LET HER LIVE, SHOW.

The other Adams Foster who hits his breaking point — quite literally — is Jesus. Last we saw him, he learned that Brandon took Emma to get her abortion, and was under the impression that Brandon and Emma were sneaking around behind his back. All this angst, paired with his traumatic brain injury, does not make for any rational reaction. Jesus runs off into the night and ends up back at the Adams Foster homestead, seething. What’s an angry, confused teen to do when he thinks his brother got his girlfriend pregnant? Why, take a baseball bat to all of his brother’s belongings, that’s what. Sure, Brandon can be unbearable sometimes, but watching Jesus completely destroy his keyboard was upsetting. That’s all that kid has!

Thankfully, Hot Dad Gabe and Ana happen to be hanging out in Gabe’s backyard oasis and hear all of this destruction go down. Don’t get it twisted, Gabe only called Ana over to commiserate over being completely clueless in how to handle being around Jesus and Mariana. Again, this is The Fosters being so adept at presenting situations from every angle. How do biological parents navigate this type of relationship? Gabe wonders if he should be around at all. Just as he considers taking that job out in Tahoe, he sees Jesus tear into the house and start swinging away in Brandon’s room.

Oh, that Gabe! He grabs the bat out of Jesus’s hands and holds him close to calm him down. Later, when Brandon and Emma return to assure Jesus that nothing is going on between them and Jesus realizes most of his evidence of an affair was only in his head, it is Gabe who knows exactly what to say to keep Jesus’s embarrassment level down. So, on second thought, maybe he won’t run off to Tahoe after all. Maybe it’s a good thing for both him and Jesus if he stays around a little bit longer. Plus, that backyard apartment doesn’t look too shabby. Of course, it took Jesus getting a nail to the brain to build it, but I digress.

Most important, this means we’re getting some forward movement in the Jesus-Emma-Brandon plot. Jesus and Emma reconcile once and for all. Kudos to The Fosters for having Emma stand firm in her decision to have an abortion, too. She’s sorry she wasn’t more up-front with Jesus, but she isn’t sorry she did it. Now, after all the smashing, Jesus and Brandon are very much on the rocks. I’m excited to watch these two brothers attempt to work this one out. How wonderful that in season five The Fosters can add such a new dimension to a familiar relationship.

In Other Family News

• So, Drew is still a total dick. I’m surprised The Fosters is going full villain with this guy — the show usually likes to remind us that life isn’t so black-and-white — but here we are. And now that Monte has informed him that she never officially resigned as principal, I can’t wait to watch her crush his evil little dreams. The fight for Anchor Beach isn’t over, people!

• It made my tiny heart swell to see Jude come to Mariana’s defense when Mr. Stratos got physical with her. (That dude really is the pits, huh?) Of course, Jude gets a face full of pepper spray for his heroics, but it’s a good moment in sibling bonding, nonetheless.

• During therapy, Mariana gets some quick closure on her previous confrontation with Ana. Ana admits that during her drug-addled days, she easily could’ve left Mariana and Jesus by themselves as babies. She knows it is unforgivable. All Mariana wants is a promise that Ana will do right by little Bella. Sometimes the kids on this show are much smarter than the adults. Usually not, but sometimes.

• Remember when Brandon yelled at Emma that he wished she never got him involved in her abortion? Sure, he apologizes later, but ugh, Brandon. You just can’t help yourself, can you?

The Fosters Season-Premiere Recap: Fight the Power